Discussion Group Issues Bill Schrader Pavilion 30 March, 2016 12 noon to 13:30

Discussion Group Issues

Bill Schrader Pavilion

30 March, 2016

12 noon to 13:30


A – A long, exclusive interview with Obama and his staff was published in the Atlantic.  This column by Friedman express my own feelings on his decision not to punish Assad for his chemical warfare attack on civilians – a grudging acceptance that the US should not waste treasure and lives on a conflict only marginal to their interests.  Do you agree with Friedman?  Has he identified correctly two cases where America should intervene?

B – This entertaining article contrasts Canada’s “living tree” constitution to Skala’s “petrified forest”.  It echoes a talk I once heard by a retired member of the Canadian supreme court that said its job is to update the law in order to align it with existing norms.  Like?

C – The BDS movement (boycott, disinvestment and sanctions) is a non-violent protest against the 50 year illegal Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory. It follows the example of the movement to end the apartheid government in South Africa 30 years ago. To combat it, Israel and its supporters have pushed for legislation to make BDS illegal, as it already is in France and England. Similar pressure is being applied in the U.S. and Canada. Is this tactic warranted or a flagrant violation of free speech on college campuses, unions and churches.  Mac

D – The Guardian points out that “a perfect storm of factors is besetting an entire generation of young adults around the world”. Are we the luckiest generation ever, and is it all downhill from here?  John

E – Is the idea of “Europe” obsolete given its many challenges?

F – Must nuclear energy be part of the solution to global warming?

G – Has the ability to manipulate public opinion made democracy obsolete?